There’s nothing like owning your own business. You get to set the rules; and have the freedom to create new concepts and ideas that are potential world-changes. With all of the work that goes into entrepreneurship, you may be overlooking something else important you’re in control of: your health. Bad health habits are prevalent among type-A personalities because they’re always on the go. You want to get the most out of life, and that is part of your natural drive to success. In order to continue the journey, it’s important to recognize some of the top red flags that indicate your health may be at risk.
#1: You Don’t Have Time for a Wellness Visit
Long wait times combined with cost and commuting can turn any busy adult off from their annual wellness visit. Skipping out on these crucial doctor’s visits can quickly turn into a downward spiral. Patients who skip one year often find that the time accumulates to several years before they’ve had their health checked out by a doctor. Annual wellness visits are important to your overall health because they provide an opportunity for your doctor to detect underlying problems you may not notice on your own. Preventive care is the key to lifelong health, just as it is important to treat health problems before they become worse. Annual visits are longer than the average checkup because they include a physical, blood work, and any other tests your doctor may deem necessary.
As with anything worth fighting for in life, sticking to these appointments takes work. You can ease the inconvenience of time constraints by booking way in advance, perhaps even taking the day off. This one day out of 365 could even potentially save your life.
#2: You Survive on Caffeine
A couple of cups of coffee or tea doesn’t harm most adults. When you go beyond this amount, however, you risk developing adverse side effects. Caffeine is technically a type of drug. It’s a plant-based stimulant that affects the way the central nervous system works. While you may depend on caffeine to support your busy schedule, it poses the risk of numerous unwanted effects:
- increased heart rate and blood pressure
Long-term mass consumption of caffeine can have lasting negative effects on the heart. For the sake of your overall health, it’s time to cut down. If you’re not sure how much caffeine you take in a day, try to be mindful of the frequency of your coffee intake. Drinking caffeine in the morning and as a pick-me-up in the afternoon is one story. If you’re having coffee at every meeting, in the office, and while commuting, you may be overdoing it.
#3: You Thrive During Times of Stress
Occasional stress is natural. You like having a packed schedule and wearing several hats. Meeting tight deadlines and working 18-hour days can even get your adrenaline going. But prolonged, continued stress can be extremely harmful to the body—even if you feel like you can handle it. Stress eventually leads to:
- body aches and pains
- insomnia and daytime fatigue
- weight gain
- heart problems
#4: You Don’t Think You Need Much Sleep
Many entrepreneurs share a common characteristic: the ability to get a lot done with little sleep. In type-A personalities, this can become quite addictive. With so much to do, you may tell yourself there’s little time to get it all done. No matter how much energy you have on little sleep, the fact is that not getting enough shut-eye is dangerous to your health. According to Medline Plus, chronically getting fewer than seven hours each night may lead to:
- cardiovascular disease
Making Smart Changes Now for a Lifetime of Health
Healthy lifestyle changes require both planning and commitment. Luckily, as a type-A personality, you’ve already mastered these two arts. The earlier you start out making changes to your health, the better the outcome. As an added bonus, you’ll find that you have more energy to tackle your endless to-do list. Start with one item at a time, whether it’s adding an extra hour of sleep, eating better, swapping a coffee for a quick walk, or practicing meditation. As you master one habit, you can keep building up until every facet of your life is in top health.
About the Author
Kristeen Cherney is a freelance health and lifestyle writer who also has a certificate in nutrition. Her work has been published on numerous health-related websites. Previously, she worked as a communications and marketing professional. Kristeen holds a BA in Communication from Florida Gulf Coast University, and is currently pursuing an MA in English with a concentration in rhetoric and cultural studies. When she's not writing or studying, she enjoys walking, kick-boxing, yoga, and traveling.
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